Posts Tagged ‘Barack Obama’

Beyoncé’s “Formation”: Opportunist consumerism not radical activism

Written by Heather. Posted in News

Beyoncé’s newly released song “Formation” has garnered a lot of attention, admiration and no little controversy. But once again, the actual lyrical content is far less powerful than the undoubtedly spectacular visuals. The lack of critical attention to the song’s lyrics however, is unsurprising given the less than revolutionary nature of them, argues Kwame Ibegbuna this guest blog. Click here for a contrasting view of “Formation” from Jaimeel Fenton.

Pharrell’s ‘new black’ : on racism, happiness and not being a ‘sore point’

Written by Kim. Posted in News

pharrell-oprah-interview-1We’ve been struck by news this week that Pharrell Williams – successful music producer, singer and collaborator – has asserted his belief in ‘the New Black’.  In an interview with US chat show host Oprah Winfrey, Williams stated that he represented a different kind of black identity:

The “new black” doesn’t blame other races for our issues. The “new black” dreams and realizes that it’s not a pigmentation; it’s a mentality. And it’s either going to work for you, or it’s going to work against you. And you’ve got to pick the side you’re gonna be on.

In this post Kim troubles Pharrell’s move, arguing that it denies the ongoing realities of racism.

When academics and journalists collide

Written by Heather. Posted in News

Our universities are continually invoking us to do research that has ‘impact’. They’re thrilled when we get media coverage and, being honest, I also enjoy the aura of glamour that comes with media attention. So, we were pleased when we were contacted by the person in charge of media promotion for this year’s BERA Conference, saying that he was considering press releasing our paper. In this post, I reflect on this experience of talking through possible journalistic angles on our work and on why it all fell through.

Young people’s celebrities: a tentative top 12

Written by Heather. Posted in News

We’re now about half way through the group interviews with young people aged 14 to 17. When we finish next term we will have talked to about 150 people across six schools in London, the South West and the North West of England. All school names used are pseudonyms. From these data we are going to select 12 celebrities to explore as case studies – delving into the discourses of aspiration that feature in talk about them. In a recent meeting we came up with this list of 12 based on the first half of the interviews…

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